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  • Madelynn Lockwood

Total Solar Eclipse across Buffalo

By: Madelynn Lockwood, Features Editor

Unless you locked yourself in a windowless room this past Monday, you probably experienced the total solar eclipse that crossed Buffalo and a large portion of North America. Although all of Buffalo was able to experience the effect of the eclipse, there were drastic differences in the amount of the actual eclipse people were able to see based on the cloud cover in their area. 

Though the eclipse’s impact was guaranteed to be felt despite the cloudy weather, there was an uneasy mood that lingered because of the high anticipation that may not be visible for all of the City of Good Neighbors. Regardless of the less-than-sunny forecast, the Quad was filled by the campus community. Canisius and its surrounding area ended up being one of the luckier sections of Buffalo, and folks in this vicinity were able to view the path of the eclipse intermittently. I was pleasantly surprised about how much I was able to see of the eclipse, and the experience in general, after multiple reports claimed that Buffalo would miss out on the event.

Even though the sight of the eclipse may have been blocked by the clouds in some areas, the remaining effects were nothing short of shocking. Buffalo, being in the path of totality, lost all sunlight for roughly three minutes and 45 seconds, starting at 3:18 p.m. This left the Quad completely dim until the lampposts turned on for a few brief minutes. 

Julia Barth, former editor-in-chief of The Griffin, viewed the eclipse from her home in Tonawanda, New York, where her family arranged a block party to celebrate the event. She said, “We saw the entirety of the totality. A lot of people don’t believe me when I say that, because of how cloudy it was all day, but it was like something just opened up for us for the entire four minutes or so.”

Other suburban areas were not so lucky, as many friends and family members in the Southtowns reported being completely clouded out of the experience and even received some ironic sunshine immediately following the end of the event. Views differed significantly between neighborhoods and sections of the city making each sight of the eclipse the luck of the draw.

The drastic change in temperature coincided with the loss of sunlight in the area. On average, areas surrounding the Buffalo area dropped 10 degrees Fahrenheit. Some on-campus observers noted the loss of bird songs, and others pointed out that they noticed their pets acting differently from their normal routine. 

Overall, I hope that everyone took a moment to experience the eclipse in some way that was meaningful to them. Unfortunately, the next time that a total solar eclipse will cross the Buffalo skyline is in 2144, but I hope for our future generations that they too can experience in the same way we did — with loved ones, together.

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